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Why Every MSP Should Consider TCO When Selecting a BCDR Solution

TCO directly impacts your ability to build a margin on your services. If your BCDR solution requires constant attention, you’ll chip away at that margin quickly.

Datto Guest Blogger

April 9, 2021

2 Min Read
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There are many factors to consider when evaluating business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) products. For managed service providers (MSPs), the total cost of ownership (TCO) should be high on that list. TCO has a direct impact on your ability to build a margin on your services. If the BCDR solution you deploy requires constant attention, you’ll chip away at that margin quickly. Let’s break down how to calculate TCO.

Calculating TCO of BCDR

 Start with hard costs, such as: 

  • Upfront hardware and software costs

  • Ongoing licensing fees

  • Ongoing cloud compute and storage fees

Then you can move on to other factors that impact TCO, such as: 

  • Ease of use

  • BCDR capabilities that offset costs (such as automation, scripting)

  • Support costs (such as additional fees, resources spent troubleshooting)

  • Employee salaries/cost of living in your region

  • Staff knowledge/experience

  • Vendors’ partner program and volume discounts

All-In-One or Build-It-Yourself BCDR

One of the largest considerations in evaluating TCO is whether you’ll choose an all-in-one BCDR solution or build your own using a software-only product. There are a variety of excellent products on either side, offering similar capabilities. Here are two key areas where they differ.

Build-It-Yourself BCDR: In many cases, build-it-yourself systems may have lower up-front costs, since you can deploy them on any hardware (e.g. inexpensive, commodity x86 servers). However, they can require considerable resources to deploy because you need to worry about compatibility, processor size, storage capacity, etc. You also take on more risk if you build your own solution because you need to coordinate between all your vendors if there is an issue.

All-In-One BCDR: All-in-one solutions, of course, come with a higher upfront price tag. However, deploying an all-in-one solution is relatively easy since the hardware is optimized to run that vendor’s software out of the box. Additionally, all-in-one solutions can be right-sized for client deployments by the vendor—eliminating manual labor on your end. All-in-one solutions may even include hardware replacement and capacity upgrades, easing scalability over time. Vendor support is another essential consideration. With an all-in-one solution, you get single-vendor support, eliminating finger-pointing when issues arise. This dramatically eases troubleshooting and ensures you can get clients back up and running quickly.

Download our latest BCDR Buyer’s Guide to learn more about what you should be looking for when investing in a BCDR solution for your business.

Caitlin Beckman is Senior Manager, Product Marketing, Datto. 

This guest blog is part of a Channel Futures sponsorship.



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